Bihar set for a normal monsoon

June 8th, 2011 - 10:34 am ICT by IANS  

Patna, June 8 (IANS) After facing two consecutive drought years, Bihar is set to get a normal monsoon this year — a good news for the millions of farmers in the state.

“Going by the advance of monsoon this year, Bihar is likely to receive a total rainfall of 1,049.2 mm till Sep 30,” Animesh Chandra, the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) director in Patna, told IANS.

He said the short spells of rain which the state witnessed Tuesday, could be attributed to pre-monsoon activities.

“Monsoon is likely to hit Bihar between June 10-15. It is on time, a big relief for drought-hit farmers of the state,” he said.

Abdus Sattar, agro-meteorologist at Rajendra Agriculture University in Samastipur district, said: “A normal monsoon after drought for two consecutive years will provide an opportunity to farmers of reaping handsome harvest of kharif paddy.”

Last year, the Bihar government declared all the 38 districts in the state drought-hit due to rainfall deficit of nearly 22 percent. Inadequate rains had severely hit paddy sowing and transplantation in most districts barring Araria, East and West Champaran.

In 2009, the government declared 26 districts drought-hit.

According to state agriculture department officials, Bihar received just 682.6 mm of rainfall in 2010 and 871.3 mm in 2009. In a normal monsoon year, Bihar receives nearly 1,100 mm of rainfall.

The scanty rainfall in the past two years had an adverse impact on the rice cultivation in the state. Its production came down to 35.14 lakh metric tonnes in 2009-10 and 35 lakh metric tonnes in 2010-11. In a normal monsoon year, the state produces over 40 lakh metric tonnes of rice — the main kharif crop cultivated in Bihar during the rainy season.

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